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Published on: Fundamentals

Operations Are The Foundation of Your Customer Experience

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When you first start out in business, at least for most entrepreneurs, things are going to be slow. You can watch almost any interview with a billionaire success story entrepreneur and hear them reference the early days in their business when they were the ones picking up the phone, making the sales, assembling the device, i.e – doing things that don’t scale. Essentially, it’s what we all had to do at one point in order to lay the foundation and ultimately to test what works and what doesn’t. In those early days of business, we developed our systems and had the privilege of trying new things that would mitigate those frustrating bottlenecks that kept popping up or for some, became a “normal” part of their business.

As we started cracking the code and found product-market fit in niche industries or consumers begging for a better solution in competitive markets, we realized that in order to grow, we had to bring on new human beings and teach them what we learned or didn’t. We had to allow someone else to take responsibility for the tasks we didn’t want to do, or shouldn’t be doing. This passing of the torch constituted the scaling of your operation. My guess is that many quickly found out that what they were doing when it was just a one-human operation was not feasible in a two-human operation – let alone 10.

That moment of insight doesn’t change when you hit 10 years in business making $20,000,000 and 18 humans on your team. You should always be considering the ways you can optimize your operations as you bring on new humans or add new products, services, or technology. Everything matters in business and everything that matters will have a direct or indirect effect on everything else. A new human [hopefully] means a new set of skills introduced. New technology means new capability or at least makes a manual but necessary task obsolete. The time and energy gained or lost by the various factors we introduce into our businesses necessitate a reevaluation of the optimal output we wish to influence with the given situation.

I see it all the time, especially in businesses with high turnover. Things change, but the processes stay the same and so the turnover stays the same until things go back to exactly the way they were when the operational procedures were put in place.

“This is how it’s always been done.”

There are so many external factors affecting your business that you can’t control. If you made a point to develop the science behind the internal functions of your operation and the humans who rely on that operation to make their tasks just a little bit more streamlined and cognizant of change, the external factors would have a lot less impact.